A Cultivation Project: My 2018 Monthly Challenges (Join Me!)

A Cultivation Project: My 2018 Monthly Challenges (Join Me!)

Back in the day on my old blog, I did something I dubbed “monthly challenges”. As the name suggests, I’d select a topic, habit, behavior, etc. to either cultivate or crack that month.

2017 was an amazing year, but I’ve found that I’ve gotten a bit off track with certain disciplines. My word/phrase of the year is “cultivated freedom”. Which to me means breaking restraint, strongholds, or things that are holding me back in multiple areas of my life. In order to grow some new, good, and better things instead.

SO, one of my goals for 2018 (that I’ve journaled in my Powersheets!) then became to bring back the monthly blog challenges as a personal little cultivation project…and invite you to join me!

I debated between sharing them or not – afraid it would add weird social pressure or just be one more thing to do, but I have to admit…it does also add a bit of accountability, support, and hopefully, a little bit of inspiration or encouragement for you, too!

Below I’m outlining my challenge for January, as well as giving a sneak peak of February’s. I’m taking it 1 to 2 months at a time, so I can ensure each month’s challenge is really speaking to me, and building off the prior month’s. Committing to them a year out made me feel a little stressed and overwhelmed and well, that’s just not the point!

For each month’s challenge, I’m also planning on recommending + reading a few books on the topic, journaling my experience, and writing a final recap on the blog!

(^Another one of my goals is to read 36 books this year!)

So here’s what I’ve got so far!


MONTH ONE // January 2018


I’ve got to give credit where credit is due on this one. I was first inspired to complete a month of no non-essential spending by the lovely Nancy Ray. She actually did this for three months, but with the “monthly” theme of my overarching goal, I’m keeping it to one month. After all, it takes 21 days to develop a new habit, so hopefully a full month will do the trick just fine!

You can read her take on it here, &/or I’ve pasted + modified her original guidelines below:

The Guidelines

What: No shopping or new purchases for clothes, accessories, home decor, or other “stuff” for one month. 

Why: To instead focus on what I already have, eliminate distraction, the impulse of always ‘needing’ more, and learning to make do with less.

Prep Tip: Clean out your closet, make any necessary purchases (not a last minute free for all!), and prepare your heart for why you’re doing this. 

Books to Read: 

  • Essentialism by Greg McKeown
  • Weird by Craig Groeschel
  • Chasing Slow by Erin Loechner*
  • The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo*

*I’ve already read these ones, so I’ll be reading the top two, but these would be great options as well!

Note: Gifts and necessities are ok! Both to receive graciously and to give. The point is to focus on cultivating a spirit of contentment, not to shut others out or deprive ourselves of real needs!

I plan to replace my tendency to buy things with going to the gym and working out, reading & writing more, spending more time with God, etc.

MONTH TWO // February 2018

THE MIRACLE MORNING CHALLENGE – (Cultivating a Morning Routine)

You can now read more on this here.

Books to Read:

  • The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod
  • The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron



That’s it for now friends!

So, will you join me?

I’ll try to share some updates along the way, and I’d always love to hear from you – in the comments below, on Instagram, or send me a message!

Lastly, Nancy’s official hashtag is #contentmentchallenge and I’ll also be using #cultivationproject!

x, Kaitlyn


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  1. January 2, 2018 / 3:05 pm

    Kaitlyn, I LOVE this idea — you’ve inspired me to do this myself for January. Chasing Slow is -incredible- and Essentialism has been sitting on my bookshelf waiting to be read. Good luck my friend!

    • January 2, 2018 / 6:15 pm

      Aw, thank you, Ally! I’m really excited about starting them up again. So excited you’ll be joining me for this one! It’s been a breath of fresh air already! And I agree – Chasing Slow is one of my favorites. Loving Essentialism, too. Already almost done – ha! xo

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